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Sheriff Takes Off Riot Gear as Protesters Cheer “Walk With Us”, So He Did

The sheriff put down his weapon and said, “I want to make this a parade, not a protest.”

Margaret Tionquiao

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  • Sheriff Chris Swanson of Genesee County has become a social media champion for the cops after he took his riot gear off to walk with protesters in Flint Township.
  • He talked, smiled, and even marched with the protesters peacefully after they chanted “walk with us.”
  • This peaceful display from Sheriff Swanson, according to the netizens, is the “correct response from the police.”

Genesee County Sheriff Chris Swanson became a social media champion after taking his riot gear off, putting down his weapon, and walking with police brutality protesters in Flint Township, Michigan. 

In a statement, Sheriff Swanson said he put his weapon down because he wanted to turn the protest into a peaceful parade. “The only reason we’re here is to make sure that you got a voice — that’s it,” Swanson said. “These cops love you — that cop over there hugs people,” he added while pointing to an officer. 

Johnie Franklin III, organizer and leader of the Michigan protest staged in Flint Township, takes a selfie with Genesee County Sheriff Chris Swanson.
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A video clip posted on Twitter showed Swanson smiling and marching with the protesters. He high-fived people in the crowd as they chanted, “walk with us!” The clip also showed Swanson responding by saying, “Let’s go, let’s go.” to the cheering crowd. He asked where they wanted to go and promised to walk with them all night. 

This peaceful display from Sheriff Swanson made waves online as a welcome contrast to the widespread demonstrations plaguing cities in the United States.

The country has been beset by demonstrations spurred in part by George Floyd of Minnesota when he perished while a police officer held him down under his knees.

While George Floyd’s brother pleaded for peace from the streets of Minneapolis, Sheriff Swanson is well on his way to becoming a social media icon of police love.

Netizens couldn’t help but appreciate the good cop!
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The online community showed appreciation for Swanson‘s peaceful approach and one Twitter user named Gwen Campbell said, “This is the correct response from police #WalkWithUs.”

Here are some other reactions online:

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Sheriff Takes Off Riot Gear as Protesters Cheer “Walk With Us”, So He Did